100 block controversy
There has been significant local press regarding a problem that restaurants in the 100 block have experienced. Several charitable groups hand out meals to the homeless in the triangular area between N. and S. Clematis Street, just adjacent to these restaurants, at certain times during the week (e.g. Wednesday evenings and Saturdays). The business owners in the area worry that the sight of large groups of homeless people directly across from the restaurants discourages business, particularly for those choosing to use the sidewalk seating outside the restaurants. The City of West Palm Beach tried to solve this problem by passing an ordinance requiring the homeless-assistance groups to move their feedings elsewhere. However, the City recently agreed to repeal the ordinance after evaluating the risks involved in a pending lawsuit against the City. As a result, the homeless feedings continue in this location, although the City will continue to work with the charitable groups to try to find alternative solutions. In the meantime, this is not a major problem for patrons of these restaurants. In my daily walks down N. Clematis Street between Pistache and the "homeless" area, I have never seen any homeless people causing any trouble at the restaurants.